There’s an article over in the Globe and Mail titled “The Rise of the Miserable Canadian Homeowner”
They talk about some of the complaints people have over the cost of ownership and the recent inability for the Canadian consumer to live within their means.
But if homeowners are dissatisfied about how they’re managing their finances, we must also consider their single largest expense on month-by-month basis. That would be the mortgage payments they’re making on their homes.
The problem with housing is that it’s expensive compared to our incomes. I will document this further in an upcoming column, but for now let’s just say that mortgages plus other basic costs of day-to-day living, such as cars and daycare, may leave us with little money left over. And so we borrow more through credit lines and credit cards. That’s our unofficial second income.
The Manulife survey shows homeowners are not happy about how things are working out, which is noteworthy. We’ve been borrowing madly as a nation for the better part of five years now, and the story has so far been cast as one of imprudent behaviour. Here, we get a sense that there’s a cost in stress and angst.
Read the full article for a run down on the numbers of people happy vs unhappy with their household finances. Basically one in three homeowners are very unhappy with how they are managing their money.